Monthly Archives: September 2017

All You Need To Know About throat Cancer

Though we as humankind haven’t had a breakthrough in completely treating every kind of cancer or a vaccine in protecting ourselves from it, if we are alert enough, there is every possibility of catching hold of it at an early stage so as to treat it well before it goes out of control. One such cancer type is throat cancer. As goes its name, it is the cancer of throat and affects the pharynx as well as the larynx or voice box. While the pharynx is located above the esophagus and larynx and below the nasal cavity, the larynx is located in the front of the neck.

Throat-Cancer-causes-symptoms

The risk factors associated with throat cancer include –
Sexually transmitted virus known as human papillomavirus (HPV)
Addictions like tobacco, gutkha, alchohol and smoking
A diet free from fruits and vegetables
Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)
Genetics viz inherited defects in certain genes
Aesbestos exposure
Dental hygiene issues
Throat Cancer Stages

There are three different stages in throat cancer. If detected at an early stage throat cancer is pretty much treatable with surgery and radiation.

Symptoms of Throat Cancer
Symptoms of throat cancer include blood coughing, swelling in lymph nodes, trouble swallowing and more. Other than that some of the potential symptoms of cancer include the following
Cough that rarely goes away
Constant Throat Clearance
Unexplained Weight loss
Soar Throat
Ear pain
Hoarseness

Stages of Throat Cancer
The levels of throat cancer are spread across four stages 0 to 3.
Stage 0 – This is the earliest stage of caner wherein the tissue isn’t affected any other areas except your throat.
Stage 1 – The cancer has not affected any other areas beyond the throat but the size of it is less than or equal to 7 cm.
Stage 2 – The size of the throat has crossed 7 cm but still hasn’t invaded other organs
Stage 3 – The cancer has spread upto nearby organs and tissues.
Stage 4 – The cancer has spread to distant organs as well as lymph nodes

Throat Cancer Diagnosis
For diagnosis the doctor or oncologist may ask to do a biopsy or a fine needle aspiration. The biopsy recommended could be either a conventional biopsy or an endoscopic biopsy. The doctors would further recommend a few tests for determining the stage of your cancer. These include CT scan, PET scan or a MRI test.

Treatment of Throat Cancer
The treatment would be typically based on the stage of the cancer. It could include removal of the tumor and radiation and chemotherapy later on. It is a prolonged process and not a matter of few days. Repeated tests would have to be carried out to determine how successful the surgery, the radiation or chemotherapy therapy have been. Based on the reports the trajectory of the further treatment would be derived.

Recovery Issues
Throat cancer complications after the surgery and treatment could include disfigurement of neck and face primarily. This though can be fixed to a certain extent through surgery. The other issues that a patient may face during recovery includes breathing and swallowing difficulty, trouble while speaking and skin hardening around the neck.

Cancer of any kind is a condition which if caught hold of early on can be treated and many a times completely eradicated but this requires you to be alert and keep a eye on your health like a hawk. Regular health checkups are advisable for the same.

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A Virtual Help to Track and Improve Your Moods – Woebot

I‘m not sure if all of you have heard about this one but Woebot, is one app that calls itself a life coach. As an automated conversational agent, it helps you track your mood patterns and helps reduce depression through therapeutic conversation. What’s more all of it with a dash of humor.

It is created by a team of Stanford psychologists and AI experts its is rather an inexpensive solution for helping you out with mental health issues like depression. It uses talk therapy and checks on you every day once. Though experts who have worked to create this virtual therapist of sorts do want us to know that it is only capable of knowing as much as you reveal to it and thus it is more like a self help book to you as it can only help as much as you want to help yourself.

Woebot communicates with you through facebook messenger. So, one of the setbacks with this is with the data protection or privacy as Facebook does have access to the information shared on this bot and apparently owns these conversations. The brighter side for users seems to be the availability of a therapists anytime anywhere, according to the over 100 long term users.

FEATURES
Its available 24/7 – This is one therapist that can be available to your round the clock.
Its a therapist – A survey of users did show that woebot does help in making you feel better
Its a mood tracker – It tracks the patterns of your mood around the week and display the same over a graph.
Its a Teacher – Yup! that’s right it does share some interesting content with yourself
Its a learner – Over time through conversations, it gets to know you better
Its a seeker – It finds patterns that are hard for humans to see

Let’s come to the bottomline. Yes, after sharing all this information on this virtual therapist or conversationalist, you would want to know about it, already. It does come at a cost but certainly less expensive to a physical affair.

We do not know to how much extent does woebot help a depressed or a low in mood person but it does claim to make a little positive difference in your mood. Well, to use it or not, is just a matter or individual choice.

Gut Bacteria as an Anti – Aging Agent – An Overview

Gut Bacteria as an Anti - Aging Agent

Gut bacteria in the years to come can help reduce the effects of aging, rather could be of great help in slowing down aging process. This could be possible with the help of supplements derived from gut bacteria. These bacterial genes and compounds can also decrease the rate of tumor progression inside our body besides amyloid beta accumulation, a compound known to be related to Alzheimer’s disease, as per University of Texas Health Science Center.

The scientists and researchers fraternity is well aware that the body interacts with millions of microbes called the microbiomes, inside the body. These microbiomes tend to influence the metabolic and cognitive activities as well as the aging process. Scientists at the Huffington Center are investigating on the possibility of importance of genetic composition of microbiomes for long life.

Experimentation
An experiment was carried out on laboratory work C. elegans as doing it on mammals was quite challenging technically. The characteristics of C. Elegans are very much similar to that of human biology and are simple, transparent organisms with a short life span of upto 3 weeks. This aids in rapid collection of data.

The experiment involved deleting one gene each from the 4000 genes at a time in an e.coli bacteria library to study the effects of each one. The researchers fed each individual mutant bacteria to the C. Elegans and then observed the worm’s life span closely.

As per the researchers, out of 4000 bacterial genes that they tested, they deleted 29 of them and found that it increased the life span of the worms. Furthermore, they also noticed that, 12 of these bacteria restricted tumor growth besides amyloid-beta accumulation. Even purified colanic acid was provided to C. Elegans and showed increased life span in them besides fruit fly and other mammalian cells. They also found that colanic acid regulated the dynamics of cellular structures called mitochondria, responsible for providing energy to the cell.

Well, based on the research that has been carried out and is being carried out, the researchers affirmatively suggest that designing supplements of the bacteria or their compounds could help slow down the aging process.

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All You Need To Know About Lipomas

If you have seen some lumpy formations around your body of the size 1 cm – 2 cm then they could be lipomas. Lipoma is a lump formed under the skin from fat deposits. It is generally found in ages 40-60 years and areas may include neck, back or shoulders. They could occur in younger generations as well and on almost any part of the body.

Lipomas are generally slow growing tumors which are generally benign in nature. They might not grow also. As per doctors, they are rarely harmful and there is meager possibility of they turning malignant.

Lipomas

Detection
A lipoma is a fat tissue based tumor and is very soft to touch. Its just under the skin and rarely painful, but it could be. It is colorless, grows slowly and moves easily when you prod it with your finger.

Causes
As of now, there is not defined reason for causing Lipomas. Though, one of the most common reasons is genetic or heriditary factor.

Treatment
Though, a doctor may not suggest any treatment on lipomas as they are painless and non benign.
But, if you are uncomfortable with the lipomas as they might look ugly, then your doctor may remove it with a minor surgery that includes numbing the area around lipoma, creating an incision and removing it. Then stitching the incision. Alternatively Liposuction can be used for removal. Another option is steriod injections in and around the affected area in order to shrink the lipoma can be used. Steriods only help to an extend of shrinking them and not complete elimination.

Home Remedies
Some natural supplements have known to be very effective with fat deposits. This includes turmeric roots, dandelion roots and more. These are those detoxifying herbs that have to be consumed with a lot of water so as to aid in elimination of the toxins. You can even take in turmeric by adding a teaspoon every day in your milk.

There are a few natural oils that might just help in controlling lipomas. This includes tea tree, frankincense, castor oil, sage oil, to name a few. Simple add a half a teaspoon of oil in you regular hair oil and apply it to the affected areas twice a day. Castor oil can also be massaged at night before going to bed on and around the lipomas.

When you use home remedies, their effect is generally slow but steady. So, you need to have a lot of patience to see the results. Use the home remedies atleast for a month and if it does not seem to work then try some other remedy from the suggested ones as per suitability. Its not that natural remedies won’t work. They might just work for you if you keep calm and use them for a long duration of time. There are stories where natural remedies have been affective in treating lipomas. They do not have side effects, so you may as well try them out.

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